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June 23, 2016

Adoption: One Man’s Extraordinary Effort


All believers are called to care for the fatherless. Most of us would readily agree, but so often it’s hard to know what to do or how we can meet the needs of these precious children. One man from West Virginia took this truth to heart and found a creative way to use a lifelong dream for an eternal purpose. On February 29, 2016, Terry began a 6-month adventure to hike the Appalachian Trail–a 5-million-step journey from Georgia to Maine. As is customary for hikers, he took a nickname–“Homeward”–for two reasons. One, he knew he would miss home and work tirelessly with every step to return to it. Second, he wanted to draw attention to adoption and every child’s need for a place to call home. “Homeward” has met new friends (one of whom is actually named Homeward!), enjoyed God’s incredible creation, and learned new truths over the past 4 months. He has chronicled his journey consistently on … Continue reading

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June 17, 2016

To Dad: from Your Adoptive Daughter


My story began in Romania with a 19-year-old unwed girl who wasn’t able to take care of me. The Lord sovereignly chose adoption for me. I am blessed that a man and a woman from the United States made a decision that radically altered my life forever when they traveled across the world and chose me as their daughter. In honor of Father’s Day, I share this letter to my adopted dad. Dearest Daddy, As America pauses to celebrate Father’s Day this Sunday, I acknowledge the painful reality that this holiday is difficult for many because of the absence of strong, godly fathers. But the Lord has seen fit to bless me with one of the greatest men I know to be my Daddy—you! While biology says you weren’t my original father, love says something else. Blood is the least of what makes a family. Godly love is the real … Continue reading

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June 14, 2016

3 Reasons Orphan Care Needs Testosterone

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The first time Mike Howerton thought about orphans was on a mission trip to Kenya in 1999. He and his team were ministering to street children ranging in age from 2 to 13. Moved by what he saw, Mike asked a missionary, “What is the hope for these kids?” He was unprepared for the missionary’s answer–that because so many of the children were abusing substances to numb their pain, they often ended up wandering into the streets and getting hit by a vehicle. A few days later, Mike was standing on a street corner when he heard the horrific screech of brakes and ran to find a street boy had been struck by a bus. Mike sat with the child for 45 minutes before an ambulance arrived, but it was too late. For Mike, this was the moment God began to touch his heart about the plight of the orphan. He and his … Continue reading

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June 10, 2016

How to Raise $11,000 | Family Friday


Finances and paperwork are two of the greatest hurdles for adopting families. Brian and Rebecca found this to be true. In their words … We were towards the end of our adoption journey when a friend, who was also a pastor of a church, told us about their Lifesong matching grant money. At the time, we were overwhelmed at the thought of having to fill out more paperwork, but at our friend’s insistence, we went ahead and did it. We were able to get processed quickly, which was a huge blessing! Over all, we raised $11,000 through the Lifesong mySTORY Crowdfunding website, including the matching grant money we received. It got us to exactly what we needed to finish our Chinese adoption. What a blessing! Lifesong was the conduit for being able to raise the rest of what we needed for our adoption. We had a place people could go and directly give knowing … Continue reading

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June 7, 2016

Why Education Is Serious Joy | Zambia Update

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Recently, a small team from Lifesong had the opportunity to put feet on the ground in Zambia to see first-hand what God is doing through ministry partners and supporters like you. What the team discovered in their brief but beneficial visit was an overwhelming testament to the goodness of God. Even greater than the magnificent scenery and the kind reception, the team was excited to meet children and families anxious to know the love of Christ. In poverty-stricken communities like Kitwe, children are often left to fend for themselves and end up dropping out of school. Without education or vocational training, these precious kids-turned-young-adults have little to no hope of breaking the poverty cycle. Because of these trends, Lifesong Zambia established a school almost a decade ago for the purpose of providing over 300 orphaned and vulnerable children with a quality Christian education, ultimately equipping young people with tools and training that will promote family preservation … Continue reading

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June 3, 2016

Hope Through Hosting | Family Friday

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We initially met our daughter, Stacey, in the summer of 2013 through an orphan hosting program. She was considered “host only” which means she was not available for adoption, so unlike other times we have parented other children in our home through foster care, there was never even a concurrent adoption plan. We just enjoyed the time we had with her. Due to circumstances beyond our control, we were unable to be in contact with her once she returned to her home country, Ukraine. The next summer, we discovered that Stacey, then called Nastya, and two of her older sisters would be participating in the same hosting program. They would be spending the summer with a wonderful family in Michigan. Just as I had been in contact with Stacey’s first host mom, who advised, prayed, and donated to our hosting, we did the same for the Michigan host mom. One … Continue reading

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May 30, 2016

Next Generation Leaders | Cambodia Update

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Enjoy this update from our Cambodia team– In our learning center in Bangpli, Thailand, one of the main goals is developing young leaders that have a heart for reaching their own community. The kids are given responsibilities that not only affect the other children at the learning center–but their families and other people in need. Chris, age 13, is responsible for helping Joel, the 3-year old son of a Pakistani Pastor who has been jailed, assimilate into the activities in the church, including helping him with basic skills such as eating and drinking on his own. David (left), one of the assistant leaders, has a heart for evangelism and prayer and loves to pray for God’s blessing over anyone he comes in contact with, especially during outreach ministry. David’s mother, Kai, recently gave birth and is part of a new ministry outreach through Pastor Vino that helps ensure pregnant women in … Continue reading

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